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Section 2: Analysis of Program Activities by Strategic Outcome

The following section provides an overview of CIC’s PAA and highlights program activities and the results achieved for each of the Department’s three strategic outcomes. It also contains tables showing the Department’s planned and actual financial resources for 2006-2007 by program activity.

CIC’s programs generate revenue from application and rights fees that is deposited in the Consolidated Revenue Fund and is not available for respending by the Department. Please refer to Table 6 for a listing of non-respendable revenue by activity. Activities that contribute to more than one outcome or that are Department-wide in nature are addressed in Section 5: “Other Items of Interest.”

The following table demonstrates how the Department’s expected program results contribute to its strategic outcomes.


Strategic Outcomes Expected Results
SO1: Maximum contribution to Canada’s economic, social and cultural development from migration.

1. Immigration Program: Contribution, through the immigration program, to Canada’s economic, social and cultural development.

2. Temporary Resident Program: Contribution, through the temporary resident program, to Canada’s economic, social and cultural development.

SO2: Reflection of Canadian values and interests in the management of international migration, including refugee protection.

3. Canada’s role in international migration and protection: Canada influences the international agenda on migration and protection.

4. Refugee Program: Maintenance of Canada’s humanitarian tradition with respect to refugees and persons in need of protection.

SO3: Successful integration of newcomers and promotion of Canadian citizenship.

5. Integration Program: Successful integration of newcomers into Canadian society within a reasonable time frame; newcomers contribute to the economic, social and cultural development needs of Canada.

6. Citizenship Program: Accordance of full participation in Canadian society to eligible permanent residents; contribution to Canada’s economic, social and cultural development.


A. Strategic Outcome 1:
Maximum Contribution to Canada’s Economic, Social and Cultural Development from Migration

Introduction

Migration is a positive force for economic and social development. CIC continues to promote Canada as a destination of choice for talent, innovation, investment and opportunity. Canada’s immigration system facilitates the entry of immigrants and temporary residents who can contribute to the labour market and economy through their skills or business experience, or through the capital they invest. Canada also welcomes family class immigrants who are sponsored, and therefore supported in their initial integration, by close family members. Many people sponsored as members of the family class also make a significant economic contribution to Canada. The success of these programs requires a balance between welcoming newcomers and protecting the health, safety and security of Canadians.

In 2006-2007, CIC worked with its partners toward increasing the contribution of the economic immigration stream to support Canada’s prosperity and competitiveness. The aim was to have a more responsive immigration system that recruits and selects immigrants who best meet labour market and economic objectives, while improving outcomes for new immigrants and maintaining the integrity of the Immigration Program. Priority processing continued to be provided to applicants selected by provinces to meet their specific employment and demographic needs. In addition, CIC explored ways to facilitate the transition from temporary to permanent residence for those who have the potential to successfully integrate into Canadian society, including temporary residents such as foreign workers who come to Canada for a fixed period of time, and foreign students. Temporary workers and foreign students are a valuable source of potential immigrants who can not only help meet current labour market and economic objectives but are also well poised to achieve economic success in Canada. CIC’s work was instrumental in the announcement of proposed improvements to the Temporary Foreign Workers program and a proposed new avenue to immigration for Canadian-educated foreign students and experienced temporary foreign workers in Budget 2007.

CIC continued to reunite families by giving priority to the processing of applications from sponsored spouses and dependent children at all of our points of service. The number of applications from parents and grandparents that were processed increased over the previous two years. In the past year, CIC strengthened partnerships to encourage immigration across Canada. It continued to work closely with its provincial and territorial partners to select immigrants and temporary workers who meet the provinces’ and territories’ particular economic, social and cultural needs.

CIC also continued to fulfil its role in identifying applicants for permanent or temporary status who could pose security or health risks to Canadians, in order to ensure that the benefits of a more responsive immigration system are not undermined. To successfully detect and deter fraud, CIC relied on effective partnerships with other departments such as the CBSA, the RCMP, PHAC and Health Canada, as well as on its own expertise.

Each year, under section 94 of IRPA, the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration is required to table before Parliament an immigration plan outlining the total number of immigrants Canada aims to receive in the subsequent year. CIC has met or exceeded its planned immigration targets for the past seven years. Please refer to the table below for the immigration target ranges and admissions for 2006.

Activity 1 – Immigration Program


Description Expected Results
Design, develop and implement policies and
programs to facilitate the entry of permanent
residents in a way which maximizes their
economic, social and cultural contribution to
Canada while protecting the health, safety and
security of Canadians
Contribution, through the immigration
program, to Canada’s economic, social and
cultural development

Financial Resources (in $ Millions)


Planned spending   $197.2
Total authorities $267.5
Actual spending $244.8

Explanation of resources used: Total authorities increased by $70.3 million over planned spending, primarily due to additional statutory requirements including employee benefit plans.

Actual expenditures were lower than total authorities by $22.7 million as a result of general operating lapses to be carried forward to 2007-2008 and due to costs incurred in the processing of parents and grandparents being lower than originally planned.

Achievement of Immigration Levels

CIC met its target immigration level in 2006. The target range for 2006 was 225,000 to 255,000, and 251,649 permanent residents were admitted.

New Permanent Residents in 2006, by Immigration Category (Compared to the Immigration Plan)


  Plan 2006
Target Ranges
Admitted
Number %
Economic Class
Skilled Workers
105,000 – 116,000
105,949
42.10
Business Immigrants
9,000 – 11,000
12,077
4.80
Live-in Caregivers
3,000 – 5,000
6,895
2.74
Provincial/Territorial Nominees
9,000 – 11,000
13,336
5.30
Total Economic Class (incl. dependants)
126,000 – 143,000
138,257
54.94
Family Class
Spouses, Partners, Children and Others
44,000 – 46,000
50,500
20.07
Parents and Grandparents
17,000 – 19,000
20,006
7.95
Total Family Class
61,000-65,000
70,506
28.02
Protected Persons
Government-Assisted Refugees
7,300 – 7,500
7,316
2.91
Privately Sponsored Refugees
3,000 – 4,000
3,337
1.33
Inland Protected Persons
19,500 – 22,000
15,892
6.32
Dependants Abroad
3,000 – 6,800
5,947
2.36
Total Protected Persons
32,800 – 40,300
32,492
12.91
Other
Humanitarian and Compassionate Grounds/Public Policy
5,100 – 6,500
10,223
4.06
Permit Holders
100 – 200
159
0.06
Total Others
5,200 – 6,700
10,382
4.12
Category not stated  
12
> 0.01
TOTAL
225,000 – 255,000
251,649
100.0

Policy and Program Development

Policy and planning work to develop options for facilitating the transition from temporary to permanent status culminated in the announcement in Budget 2007 of a proposed new avenue to immigration by permitting, under certain conditions, foreign students with a Canadian credential and skilled work experience, and skilled temporary foreign workers who are already in Canada, to apply for permanent residence. As the program is rolled out in the coming months, it is expected that it will lead to improved and more rapid success for this group of economic immigrants.

Policy and development work on multi-year planning for setting immigration levels was a key priority in 2006-2007. At the June 2006 meeting of Federal, Provincial and Territorial Ministers responsible for Immigration, Ministers endorsed the development of a multi-year plan and a joint consultation process with stakeholders across the country. In the fall and early winter of 2006, CIC developed a consultation strategy and approach in cooperation with provincial and territorial departments. Consultations, which were launched in March 2007 across the country, will inform work on a proposed multi-year planning approach.

A multi-year plan will allow CIC to take a longer view in the planning process for immigration. It will make it possible to deliver a balanced stream of temporary and permanent immigrants suited both to the immediate and longer-term needs of Canadian communities and labour markets. Over the long term, it will foster greater cohesion in the immigration system and contribute to improved economic and social outcomes for immigrants.

A key policy challenge relates to how the benefits of immigration can be shared more equitably throughout Canada. For example, under the auspices of the Atlantic Population Table, CIC continues to work with the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA), the four Atlantic Provinces and HRSDC to create integrated initiatives that support increased immigration to meet local needs. In particular, CIC is collaborating in initiatives to support immigration research and labour market integration of international students in Atlantic Canada.

CIC and Ontario’s Ministry of Citizenship and Immigration, in collaboration with the Association of Municipalities of Ontario (AMO), are working to increase municipal government involvement in the attraction, retention, settlement and integration of immigrants. This work, which follows through on commitments made under the Canada-Ontario Immigration Agreement (COIA), focuses primarily on the needs of immigrants in urban centres outside the City of Toronto, in smaller centres, and rural, northern and official language minority communities across the province. CIC is also providing the province with funding to help develop on-line content for the Ontario immigration portal. The content will promote Ontario municipalities to prospective immigrants and newcomers to Canada. In May 2006, funding was announced for five municipalities: London, Ottawa, Windsor-Essex, Sudbury and Toronto.

In September 2006, CIC released the Strategic Plan to Foster Immigration to Francophone Minority Communities, a long-term plan to work toward attracting, integrating and retaining French-speaking immigrants in communities throughout Canada. [note 11]

As part of the ongoing review of the current Humanitarian and Compassionate (H&C) policy, an evaluation framework was completed in December 2006. The review will continue through 2007-2008 and is expected to identify areas where the policy may be improved in order to enhance accountability and service delivery.

As part of the Department’s commitment to protecting victims of human trafficking, guidelines were released in May 2006 that encourage immigration officers to issue possible victims a short-term Temporary Resident Permit (TRP). A longer-term TRP can be issued when it is established that the person is a victim of trafficking. Victims of trafficking will be exempted from the fee for the initial short-term TRP, and will be eligible for health-care benefits under the Interim Federal Health program. CIC continues to monitor the implementation of these interim guidelines. To complement the guidelines, CIC, in cooperation with the CBSA, is developing training programs to raise awareness of trafficking among frontline officers.

To better serve immigrants who choose to use an immigration representative, CIC is developing a policy on information sharing between CIC and these bodies in order to promote consumer protection and program integrity.

In 2006-2007, CIC also established an Anti-fraud Network and Bulletin to promote increased awareness of fraud and to facilitate the sharing of best practices among CIC officers in Canada and abroad.

Selection and Processing of Skilled Workers

Baseline data continued to be collected for use in a formative evaluation to assess the early outcomes of skilled worker immigrants selected under the new criteria introduced by IRPA in June 2002. At the end of 2006-2007, data volumes were still not sufficiently large nor representative enough to allow work on a full evaluation to begin. An evaluation will begin in 2007-2008, with results available in 2008-2009.

In 2006, Skilled Worker admissions reached 105,949, meeting the planned range announced in the 2006 Levels Plan.

Selection and Processing of Business Immigrants

In 2006-2007, the data requirements to evaluate the federal Entrepreneur program were clarified and data collection was started. CIC will work to streamline and coordinate best practices for program delivery.

In 2006-2007, CIC continued to monitor approximately 60 private and provincially administered investment funds that operate under the 1976 Immigration Act. The monitoring ensures the funds comply with the Act and associated regulations.

Under the Immigrant Investor Program (IIP), launched in April 1999, CIC acts as an agent to allocate immigrant investor capital to participating provincial and territorial governments for their use in economic development initiatives. No new provinces or territories joined the program in 2006-2007. CIC is continuing discussions with other provinces that have expressed an interest in participating.

As of March 31, 2007, CIC had gross allocations outstanding of $875,200,000 to the provincial government funds operating under the new IIP. This is not recorded as either an asset or liability of the Government of Canada because CIC acts solely as an agent for the provinces. Only investments that have been collected, but not yet remitted to either the provincial funds or to the investor (i.e. they are still being held in CIC’s account for a limited period of time), are recorded.

Details of amounts remitted to the participating provinces are as follows.


Year
Received
Investors Amount
Invested
Ontario B.C. P.E.I. Manitoba N.W.T. Newfoundland Year of
Repayment
2002-03
80
32,000,000
17,600,216
8,970,814
5,428,970
2007-08
2003-04
105
42,000,000
21,875,124
10,615,401
6,104,484
1,384,506
2,020,485
2008-09
2004-05
723
289,200,000
133,807,464
59,016,231
29,740,972
37,029,218
29,606,115
2009-10
2005-06
757
302,800,000
132,781,133
57,648,800
26,905,490
34,279,968
26,870,025
24,314,584
2010-11
2006-07
527
210,800,000
90,939,316
39,979,871
18,136,775
23,240,523
18,154,036
20,349,479
2011-12
Total $
2192
876,800,000
397,003,253
176,231,117
86,316,691
95,934,215
76,650,661
44,664,063
 

During 2006-2007, the following amounts allocated to provincial funds were repaid to investors via CIC. Investors can make a request for repayment if a permanent resident visa was not issued.


Investment
Year
Investors Investment Ontario B.C. P.E.I. Manitoba N.W.T. Newfoundland Refund
Year
2005-06
1
400,000
173,867
74,684
34,430
44,130
34,365
38,524
2006-07
2004-05
3
1,200,000
556,344
243,711
123,420
153,834
122,691
2006-07

In 2006, business immigrant admissions reached 12,077, exceeding the planned range of 9,000 to 11,000 announced in the 2006 Levels Plan.

Family Class

In December 2006, the Department’s interim policy on same-sex marriage was repealed. As a result, same-sex marriages are now recognized for all immigration purposes as long as the marriage is legally recognized both under Canadian law, and where the marriage occurred outside of Canada, in the country where the marriage ceremony occurred.

The inter-country adoption process is a shared responsibility between the federal and provincial/territorial governments. In March 2007, a rountable meeting was held with our partners to discuss respective roles and responsibilities with regard to better protecting adopted children.

In 2006, Family Class admissions reached 70,506, exceeding the planned range of 61,000 to 65,000 announced in the 2006 Levels Plan. The largest portion of this increase consisted of 4,500 admissions above the upper end of the planning range for the Spouses, Partners and Children category in response to higher than expected application volumes in 2006. The remaining increase of some 1,000 admissions was in the Parents and Grandparents category, which resulted from a time-limited increase in resources provided mid-year to address inventories in Canada and in missions abroad.

Provincial and Territorial Nominee Program (PNP)

CIC offered several rounds of training across Canada to provincial government staff in 2006-2007 in order to improve processing of applicants in PNPs. CIC is also a regular coorganizer and participant in biannual federal-provincial/territorial working groups, a forum in which program information and best practices are shared between federal and provincial PNP staff.

In 2006-2007, the Department undertook negotiations for new PNP agreements with Alberta, Prince Edward Island, Yukon and Nova Scotia and signed a new agreement with Newfoundland and Labrador. These new agreements include clauses to strengthen Official Language Minority Communities throughout Canada.

In 2006, provincial nominee admissions reached 13,336, exceeding the planned range of 9,000 to 11,000 announced in the 2006 Levels Plan. The increase is due largely to growing nomination volumes by provinces in response to strong demand for workers with specialized skills in certain regions and labour markets across Canada. CIC continued to provide priority processing to applicants selected by provinces.

Permanent Resident Card

An analysis of immigration and citizenship trends was completed in order to forecast Permanent Resident (PR) card renewal volumes. No significant funding pressure is anticipated, except for 2008-2009, when the volume of PR card requests is estimated to be well above CIC’s capacity. This high volume is anticipated as PR cards were introduced in 2002, have a five-year expiry date, and because the bulk of these cards were issued in 2003-2004.

A PR card renewal campaign was implemented and products were distributed to CIC offices inland and overseas, and to the CBSA, MPs and other partners. Ads were placed in most national newspapers, magazines, travel sites and ethnic media and newspapers. The campaign reminds permanent residents of the expiry date on their cards and therefore influences the timing of renewal applications. CIC’s Web page also provides information on PR card renewal.

Activity 2 – Temporary Resident Program


Description Expected Results
Design, develop and implement policies and programs to facilitate the entry of temporary workers, students and visitors in a way which maximizes their economic, social and cultural contribution to Canada while protecting the health, safety and security of Canadians Contribution, through the temporary resident program, to Canada’s economic, social and cultural development

Financial Resources (in $ Millions)


Planned spending  
$89.1
Total authorities
$118.3
Actual spending
$104.9

Explanation of resources used: Total authorities were $29.2 million higher than planned spending, primarily due to additional funding received through Supplementary Estimates and additional statutory requirements for employee benefit plans.

Resources totalling $13.4 million lapsed, due to Biometrics funding which was approved for spending in future years, unused funding for the processing of foreign students, and general operating lapses to be carried forward to 2007-2008.

Temporary Foreign Workers

Together with HRSDC, CIC announced a number of improvements to the Temporary Foreign Workers Program (TFWP) in 2006-2007. These included extending the maximum duration of the work permit for Temporary Foreign Workers (TFWs) with less formal training from 12 months to 24 months, extending the maximum duration of the work permit for Live-in Caregivers from one year to three years and three months, and expediting the process for employers hiring a foreign worker by allowing work permit applications to be processed at the same time as the application for a Labour Market Opinion, at the request of the worker.

The Manila Visa Office implemented a special initiative to reduce the large backlog of Live-In Caregiver (LCP) applications. An integral part of the project was a new diagnostic screening mechanism called the SPEAK (Spoken English and Knowledge) Test, which was developed in conjunction with an established service provider. This initiative resulted in a significant reduction in file inventory and processing times for LCP applicants.

Budget 2007 provided $50.5 million over the next two years to support a series of improvements to the TFWP designed to reduce processing delays and more effectively respond to regional labour and skill shortages. A number of these improvements will be implemented in 2007-2008 and others in subsequent years.

Negotiations with the Government of Ontario on the Temporary Foreign Workers Annex of COIA have progressed well. Negotiation of the agreement is expected to be concluded in summer or early fall 2007. The annex will provide a mechanism for both levels of government to work together to facilitate the entry of TFWs to support regional economic stability and growth. Negotiations of similar annex agreements with interested jurisdictions are expected to commence shortly.

In 2006, foreign worker flows to Canada totaled 112,658.

Selection and Processing of Visitors and Foreign Students

In collaboration with partners, CIC successfully delivered key initiatives to help Canada maintain its competitive edge in attracting international students. The Off-Campus Work Permit Program, a national program that allows international students in public post-secondary institutions to seek employment off campus, was launched in April 2006. CIC created a dedicated unit to deal with pressures associated with issuing off-campus permits. As a result, a total of 14,964 students received work permits during fiscal year 2006-2007. As well, the Post-Graduation Work Permit Program was significantly improved by extending work permits to up to two years for international students who have graduated from public post-secondary institutions and certain private institutions located in regions outside of Montreal, Toronto and Vancouver. The aim is to help spread the benefits of immigration to more of Canada’s regions. During 2006-2007 a total of 1,388 students received a two-year work permit. Throughout 2006-2007, discussions with stakeholders took place to explore options for improving and expanding these programs. Discussions with partners on future directions are underway.

Tourists and business visitors make a significant contribution to our economy by creating a demand for services in the hospitality sector and allowing Canadian businesses to benefit from their specialized expertise. At present, citizens from 146 countries require temporary resident visas to visit Canada. In 2006, CIC processed applications for 987,378 persons seeking temporary resident visas as tourists and business visitors to Canada.

B. Strategic Outcome 2: Reflection of Canadian Values and Interests in the Management of International Migration, including Refugee Protection

Introduction

Migration and humanitarian issues continue to gain international attention and have moved to centre stage on many fronts. CIC continued to expand its role in framing and advancing a series of important international migration policy and governance dialogues. These dialogues, which are at varying levels of maturity, broadly encompass the links between migration policy and foreign affairs in such areas as development assistance, trade, and health and human capital flows. Part of CIC’s role is to align departmental and Canadian government positions. This role reaffirms CIC’s commitment to developing a strategic agenda on global migration and protection and to identifying opportunities for advancing Canada’s policy and program priorities through domestic and international links and partnerships.

Every year, Canada grants protection to thousands of people. Nearly half are selected abroad. The balance claim refugee status from within Canada and are granted permanent resident status when it’s determined that they qualify as protected persons.

Effective and timely health care is key to successfully integrating protected persons into Canadian society. Providing essential health care and rapidly identifying and managing diseases and illnesses continue to be important aspects of protecting refugee claimants, other vulnerable immigrants, and the health of Canadians.

Activity 3 – Canada’s Role in International Migration and Protection


Description Expected Results
Assert Canada’s position in the context of international migration to influence the international agenda on migration and protection Canada influences the international agenda on migration and protection

Financial Resources (in $ Millions)


Planned spending  
$4.9
Total authorities
$3.9
Actual spending
$2.8

Explanation of resources used: Total authorities were lower than planned spending by $1.0 million, primarily due to lower-than-planned exchange requirements for CIC’s contribution to the International Organization for Migration.

International Migration Policy

In cooperation with other federal government departments, CIC produced a strategy for Canada’s engagement in international migration management. During the course of consultations, a decision was made to broaden the focus of the strategy to enhance interdepartmental cooperation. This work will be undertaken in 2007-2008. In the fall of 2006, CIC also relaunched the Interdepartmental Migration Group to strengthen cooperation among federal departments on international migration issues, including migration and development.

CIC led efforts to advance Canada’s positions and interests by coordinating interdepartmental participation in several international migration fora. These included the Intergovernmental Consultation on Asylum, Refugees and Migration Policies (IGC), the Regional Conference on Migration (RCM), the International Organization for Migration (IOM), and the United Nations. CIC contributed financial support for the operation and activities of the RCM, IGC and the Migration Policy Institute (MPI), with the latter organizing strategic migration discussions in the United States and a Trans-Atlantic migration policy discussion. In 2006-2007, CIC made significant contributions to the successful negotiation of Regional Guidelines for Child Victims of Trafficking through the RCM, and to a new strategic direction for the IOM. CIC also developed Government of Canada positions in collaboration with other federal departments and effectively represented Canadian interests at the United Nations’ High Level Dialogue on Migration and Development in September 2006.

CIC also actively engaged in bilateral dialogues on migration issues. The Department pursued a closer cooperative arrangement with the European Commission’s Directorate General for Freedom, Justice and Security in an effort to facilitate an exchange of information and ideas about migration. The Department also received delegations of elected officials, bureaucrats and academics from a number of countries, including Norway, the United States, Sweden, the United Kingdom, Russia and Mexico, which were interested in learning about Canada’s approach to immigration, refugee and citizenship programming.

CIC promoted Canada’s views on managed migration on the international stage by organizing and chairing a workshop on Immigration Point Systems for members of the IGC, delivering a presentation on the subject at the Migration Legislation Seminar in Guatemala, and by contributing to the agenda and concluding declaration of several key international forums including the G8 Justice and Home Affairs Meeting. CIC also sponsored an initiative through the RCM to develop and distribute a handbook to help members building their capacity to manage migration.

In 2006-2007, CIC continued efforts to enhance its role and profile in matters relating to intelligence, security and fraud in IRPA programs. CIC participated in the Pacific Rim and Immigration Fraud Conferences and continued building alliances and promoting CIC and Canadian interests in other multilateral and bilateral fora.

Activity 4 – Refugee Program


Description Expected Results
Maintain Canada’s humanitarian tradition by protecting refugees and persons in need of protection in Canada and abroad Maintenance of Canada’s humanitarian tradition with respect to refugees and persons in need of protection

Financial Resources (in $ Millions)


Planned spending  
$93.7
Total authorities
$88.7
Actual spending
$84.1

Explanation of resources used: Total authorities decreased from planned spending by a net amount of $5.0 million due to transfers through Supplementary Estimates.

Actual expenditures were lower than total authorities by $4.6 million as a result of unused funding for the Interim Federal Health Program and due to reduced costs associated with lower than anticipated volumes of refugee applications.

Policy and Program Development

The objective of the refugee protection program is to provide protection to those whose lives are at risk or who risk persecution, torture, or cruel and unusual treatment or punishment.

In 2006-2007, CIC continued to examine and implement options to streamline the domestic refugee protection system. The goal is to arrive at decisions faster — to grant permanent residence to successful claimants in a timely manner and ensure that unsuccessful claimants have their situations finalized promptly — without compromising the fairness and integrity of the system. In their effort to streamline processes, CIC, the CBSA and the IRB merged the different forms they have been using to gather information from refugee claimants into one consolidated form. The new form was tested in 2006-2007 through a pilot project in select offices and an evaluation of the results of the pilot is currently underway.

In 2006-2007, the processing time for permanent residence applications by protected persons in Canada was decreased by several months. In addition, providing information on overseas family members to missions abroad in the early stages of processing the application of the principal applicant in Canada allowed for simultaneous processing and earlier reunification of family members.

In 2006-2007, CIC continued its efforts to use the resettlement program more strategically, in order to have a greater impact on international protection needs. It engaged effectively with other government departments, and with the international community and other resettlement countries to find more lasting solutions for refugees. CIC was involved in responses to various protracted refugee situations in 2006-2007. It dealt with Karen refugees in Thailand and Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh, and participated in an international Core Group dealing with Bhutanese refugees in Nepal. CIC also used its refugee resettlement program to respond to other urgent calls such as the one from the UNHCR to increase referral space for Iraqis.

CIC initiated a review of procedures that would effectively communicate the health needs of refugees selected for resettlement in Canada while respecting their privacy rights. This review is expected to lead to enhanced procedures in 2007-2008.

In 2006, the governments of Canada and the US reviewed the first year of implementation of the Safe Third Country Agreement. The review was conducted in cooperation with the UNHCR and with input from NGOs. It found that the Agreement was well implemented and that asylum seekers are provided access to a full, fair refugee status determination process in one country or the other. The majority of UNHCR recommendations have already been implemented. After the release of the report in November 2006, the UNHCR integrated its role in monitoring the Agreement into its role in monitoring the Canadian refugee protection program. CIC, the CBSA and the UNHCR also established a consultation group to carry on the work of the Safe Third Country Working Group.

In 2006-2007, CIC continued to work closely with the UNHCR to deliver the overseas resettlement program and to ensure that the domestic asylum system complies with international humanitarian law. CIC also worked with the UNHCR on issues related to international protection in general. In November 2006, Canada welcomed the first visit of the current United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, Antnio Guterres.

CIC officials continued to communicate regularly with the Canadian Council for Refugees (CCR) through various consultations, meetings and conference calls, allowing for constructive and substantive CIC-CCR discussions.

A formal evaluation of the Private Sponsorship of Refugees (PSR) Program was undertaken in 2006 in order to assess the program’s continued relevance, success in achieving its desired outcomes and cost effectiveness. CIC and the private refugee sponsorship community worked together to strengthen the PSR program. For example, in a special effort to reduce the inventory, Sponsorship Agreement Holders (SAHs) voluntarily cut back on the number of applications they submitted in 2006 by over 30 percent and CIC increased the number of PSR cases it processed. This resulted in the smallest annual increase in inventory size in over five years. A further reduction of the inventory is expected in 2007-2008. The upper end of the PSR target was raised to 4,500 for 2007 to provide greater flexibility for managing protracted refugee situations. In addition, CIC continued to fund a refugee eligibility training program to help private sponsors with refugee identification. Further administrative measures to address program challenges will be identified following a PSR Program Conference that is expected to take place in fall 2007.

The Asylum Annex to the Statement of Mutual Understanding on Information Sharing between Canada and the United States with respect to refugee claimants and asylum applicants provides for the systematic exchange of biographic or biometric information between the two countries. The evaluation of a pilot project conducted in 2005 confirmed the feasibility of implementing the Annex. Tests relating to the timely exchange of biometric information will be conducted before the Annex is fully implemented.

While Canada’s refugee status determination system meets legal requirements, provides protection to those who need it, and provides opportunities for decisions to be reviewed, CIC remains committed to the continuous improvement of the system. During the 2006-2007 fiscal year, CIC assigned additional resources to the Pre-Removal Risk Assessment (PRRA) process in order to increase PRRA decision-making capacity and to better manage the inventory of PRRA cases waiting for decisions.

In January 2007, CIC began a comprehensive evaluation of the PRRA program to ensure that it protects those who need it and facilitates the removal of those not in need of protection. The evaluation will also identify areas in need of further improvement. Results from the evaluation may contribute to future administrative reforms aimed at improving CIC’s ability to deliver timely decisions for refugee protection claimants.

In 2006-2007, CIC worked through CIDA to provide $1 million in financial support for initiatives under the Mexico Plan of Action. This support will help developing countries in the Latin American region build refugee resettlement capacity.

Selection and Processing of Protected Persons (Resettlement/Asylum)

The inventory of applications for permanent residence by protected persons in Canada was reduced by nearly half. In September 2005, the inventory was around 16,300 applications; at the end of March 2007, the inventory was approximately 9,400 applications. Additional resources and a decline in the number of claims received in 2004 and 2005 contributed to the inventory reduction.

The Government-Assisted Refugee (GAR) admissions target range of 7,300 to 7,500 was met, with 7,316 refugees arriving in 2006 under this program. CIC made decisions on applications for over 8,300 persons in efforts to reduce the inventory in the PSR Program. The target range of 3,000 to 4,000 for privately sponsored refugees was also met, allowing Canada to resettle an additional 3,337 refugees under this program in 2006.

In 2006, Canada granted permanent residence to 15,892 in-Canada protected persons, short of the planned range of 19,500 to 22,000. The number of inland protected persons admitted to Canada is largely dependent on the number of asylum claims, and the number found to be in need of Canada’s protection. It is not unusual for these numbers to vary significantly from one year to the next, reflecting changing conditions in source countries. In 2006, there was a significantly lower intake of inland protected persons than originally planned. Also notable is the substantial reduction in inventory of pending applications and the reduction by several months in the processing time for these applications for permanent residence.

The 3,000-6,800 target range for overseas dependants (abroad) of protected persons in Canada was comfortably met, with 5,947 persons becoming permanent residents in 2006.

Immigration Loan Program

Canada provides loans to refugees in order to help them pay for the costs of medical examinations abroad, travel documents and/or transportation to Canada. This fund is essential since refugees often have few personal financial resources and are unable to access traditional lending institutions.

The repayment record for the 50 year-old program is over 90 percent. In 2006-2007, CIC continued to manage loan collection with due diligence to ensure the recovery rate for repayment remains at this level, thereby ensuring the sustainability of our refugee program. The current limit on the loan fund is $110 million of which outstanding loan accounts totaled $38.1 million as of March 31, 2007.

In 2006-2007, CIC contributed $1.2 million from the Resettlement Assistance Program (RAP) to alleviate the loans of some refugees with special needs (seniors, refugees with health issues, and single parents with large families). In addition, Parliament approved the write off of $978,102 in immigration loans in the 2006-2007 final supplementary estimates.

Interim Federal Health Program

Under the Interim Federal Health Program (IFHP), CIC continued to provide supplementary and basic health-care coverage for refugee claimants and protected persons during the period they do not qualify for provincial medical insurance. In 2006-2007, 517,300 claims were processed for a total direct program expenditure of $44.7M. IFHP provided access to health-care services for over 95,000 eligible clients, including over 25,000 children and youth. IFHP also provided customized health-care services to over 750 Karen refugees from Thailand to meet their specific needs.

CIC has begun to develop the IFHP integrated Results and Risk based Management Accountability Framework in line with the recommendations put forth in the 2006 independent program review. Through intra-departmental consultations and participation in the Federal Health Partnership, IFHP policies and delivery systems have been reviewed in order to improve the efficiency, responsiveness and integrity of the IFHP. A gap analysis regarding communications
with service provider organizations and health-care providers has been completed.

C. Strategic Outcome 3: Successful Integration of Newcomers and Promotion of Canadian Citizenship

Introduction

For Canada to realize the economic, social and cultural benefits of immigration, newcomers must integrate successfully into Canadian society. Integration and settlement programs are also crucial in providing immigrants and refugees with a supportive environment that enables them to maximize their potential and realize their aspirations. In Canada, welcoming newcomers and helping them integrate into our society is a community effort that is supported by partnerships with the provinces, territories, municipalities and community organizations. Obtaining Canadian citizenship is a significant step in the settlement process as it enables immigrants to fully participate in Canadian society.

Activity 5 – Integration Program


Description Expected Results
Develop policies and programs to support the settlement, resettlement, adaptation and integration of newcomers into Canadian society by delivering orientation, adaptation and language programs for newcomers Successful integration of newcomers into Canadian society within a reasonable time frame; newcomers contribute to the economic, social and cultural development needs of Canada

Financial Resources (in $ Millions)


Planned spending  
$675.7
Total authorities
$630.5
Actual spending
$550.6

Explanation of resources used: Total authorities decreased, compared to planned spending, by a net amount of $45.2 million, mainly due to Settlement funding which was approved for spending in future years.

Actual expenditures were lower than total authorities by $79.9 million, primarily as a result of $67.8 million of settlement funding which was reprofiled (moved forward) for spending in future years. The balance of the reduced requirements ($12.1 million) was mainly due to lower than planned expenditures in settlement programs and general operating lapses associated with lower spending under COIA.

Settlement Policy and Program Development

During 2006-2007, extensive interdepartmental and intergovernmental consultations were undertaken, led by HRSDC in close collaboration with CIC, to develop the mandate, activities and governance structures needed to create the Foreign Credential Referral Office (FCRO) announced in Budget 2007. The FCRO is a new federal office that was launched within CIC in spring 2007. It will help internationally trained individuals, both overseas and in Canada, find the information and access the pathfinding and referral services they need to put their skills to work in the Canadian labour market. The FCRO is also working closely with partners across jurisdictions and with employers and other stakeholders to strengthen foreign credential assessment and recognition processes in Canada.

In 2006-2007, CIC further engaged the academic sector to assist our resettlement program in undertaking an evidence-based analysis of CIC’s resettled refugee integration policy. This process will continue in 2007-2008.

CIC undertook pilot initiatives in 2006-2007 with the aim of evaluating and collecting data relevant for the development of client-focused settlement programs for resettled refugees. The initiatives included studies to develop recommendations for programs better tailored to meet the social and economic integration needs of refugees, including children and youth. These initiatives encompass the broad range of integration programs for newcomers, and are being developed with input from stakeholders.

In 2006-2007, CIC completed a national RAP training needs assessment with the aim of improving effective RAP delivery to clients. This will form the basis for funding specific training initiatives to be included in the 2007-2008 national RAP budget.

A review of performance measurement strategies for settlement programs was initiated in 2006-2007. The goals of the review are to better align immigrant outcomes with settlement program outputs and to evaluate immigrants’ progress from landing to integration into society and/or the labour market. CIC also reviewed the relevance of a client-centred approach to overcome gaps, barriers and challenges faced by immigrants. Pilot projects conducted across Canada promoted innovation and the use of best practices in the settlement field. The projects included Language Instruction for Newcomers to Canada (LINC) Classes targeted to specific groups, the addition of two higher LINC language levels, distance learning, youth Host programming and the rollout of Settlement Workers in Schools in new cities and regions.

CIC funded new Enhanced Language Training (ELT) projects across Canada (except in Quebec, Nunavut and Northwest Territories). The management and monitoring of ELT contribution agreements with service provider organizations (SPOs) was decentralized to further integrate delivery of settlement and integration services in communities across Canada, and to support local SPOs. The Second National ELT Conference was held, bringing together provincial and territorial representatives and service providers in all jurisdictions (except Nunavut and the Northwest Territories), to share lessons learned and promising practices. The conference was also an opportunity to share preliminary findings of the ELT Data Collection Questionnaires, which were completed by service providers in Ontario, Newfoundland and Labrador, Alberta, Nova Scotia and the Yukon. They demonstrate that ELT programs are reaching both men and women from a range of source countries. The programs are accessed mostly by highly educated professionals between the ages of 35 and 44. Most newcomers who enrol in an ELT program see it through to completion and many have found commensurate employment. On balance, the preliminary findings confirm that ELT is reaching its targeted audience of skilled newcomers. And, most importantly, the service is helping these newcomers improve their language skills, become more familiar with the Canadian workplace and make contacts in their professional fields.

As part of CIC’s contribution to Canada’s Action Plan Against Racism, it issued a national Call for Proposals to support national anti-racism activities over 2006-2008 under the Welcoming Communities Initiative. Funding was allocated to provinces and territories (except Quebec and Ontario) for ongoing anti-racism activities. Six new initiatives were funded to support anti-racism efforts (e.g., research, tools and direct services).

CIC conducted multilateral consultations with provinces and territories during summer 2006 to develop an allocation model for equitably distributing additional funding announced in Budget 2006. The funds will be distributed to provinces and territories outside of Quebec and Ontario over the 2006-2007 and 2007-2008 fiscal years. The new two-year funding formula will address immediate integration needs of immigrants and refugees in the relevant jurisdictions by improving existing programs and launching pilot projects to address the needs of specific client groups.

Newcomer Settlement Support

CIC continues to develop and promote effective relationships with SPOs responsible for delivery of RAP. CIC held the National RAP Conference in February 2007 which was attended by 240 delegates from SPOs, provinces, national and international NGOs, and CIC. The Conference was an opportunity for SPOs to share experiences, develop skills, and provide recommendations for better focusing settlement programming on the needs of refugee clients.

In response to the 2004 RAP evaluation, in 2006-2007, RAP was enhanced to more effectively meet the immediate and essential needs of Government-Assisted Refugees (GARs). Improvements include increased support programming and income supports for GARs. RAP allowances were increased to match increases in social assistance rates by the provinces, and a new Monthly School Allowance for children was added.

Programming enhancements in 2006-2007 included a new life skills orientation program for resettled refugees who need basic life skills education and an overall increase to the funded hours of RAP service support for each GAR. These refinements allow service providers greater flexibility to respond to the particular needs of resettled refugees.

The LINC Program provided adult immigrants with full- or part-time basic language training in one of Canada’s official languages. A new LINC placement grid was developed to facilitate national consistency in the application of the Canadian Language Benchmarks (CLBs). This grid serves as the new operational guideline on the correspondence between the LINC levels, the CLBs and the four language competencies.

The Host Program continued to help newcomers settle, adapt, and integrate into Canadian life by using volunteers that are familiar with Canadian ways and are trained by SPOs that arrange the matches.

The Going to Canada Immigration Portal (www.goingtocanada.gc.ca), developed by CIC and HRSDC, offers comprehensive and integrated information to prospective and new immigrants to assist them in preparing to live, work and study in Canada. Under this initiative the following was achieved in 2006-2007:

  • Multi-year agreements were put in place with most provinces and territories to help jurisdictions develop Web portals for prospective immigrants and newcomers. The provincial and territorial portals will link to the Government of Canada’s Going to Canada Immigration Portal.
  • CIC and HRSDC undertook domestic and international public opinion research to guide the development of portal tools and content.

With the signing of the COIA in November 2005, the federal and provincial governments commenced consultations and meetings with various stakeholders to create a strategic plan outlining four strategies for action related to settlement services, language training, partnerships, and research and accountability. As per COIA, a set of federal-provincial committees and working groups have been established to implement provisions of the Agreement and its Annexes.

Activity 6 – Citizenship Program


Description Expected Results
Design, develop and implement policies and programs to administer the acquisition of Canadian citizenship and to enhance the values and promote rights and responsibilities of Canadian citizenship Accordance of full participation in Canadian society to eligible permanent residents; contribution to Canada’s economic, social and cultural development

Financial Resources (in $ Millions)


Planned spending  
$88.2
Total authorities
$75.0
Actual spending
$71.4

Explanation of resources used: Total authorities were lower than planned spending by $13.2 million, due to transfers of funding through Supplementary Estimates.

Actual expenditures were lower than total authorities by $3.6 million mainly due to general operating lapses to be carried forward to 2007-2008.

Citizenship Policy and Program Development

In May 2006, Bill C-14, An Act to Amend the Citizenship Act (Adoption) was introduced in Parliament. In 2006-2007, CIC supported Bill C-14 through the House of Commons and is taking steps to prepare for implementation including conducting consultations with the provinces and stakeholders on proposed content for regulations.

Following the Minister’s announcement in January 2007, operational policy and procedures were implemented to identify and facilitate applications for citizenship for individuals who have been residing most of their lives in Canada and have a reasonable but mistaken belief they are Canadian citizens. A Citizenship Fees Remission Order was approved in March 2007, providing the authority to remit citizenship fees for these individuals when they are under consideration for, or granted, citizenship under section 5(4) of the Citizenship Act, if they meet certain conditions provided in the Remission Order.

CIC continually reviews its existing processes to identify and implement changes that will improve service to citizenship clients. In 2006-2007, improvements to file preparation, document review and identification were implemented at CIC offices across Canada. These improvements will strengthen program integrity and ensure a higher degree of consistency in client service delivery.

With the increased demand for Canadian passports and media attention given to citizenship, CIC has updated its web site to provide more information to persons who have concerns about their citizenship status. It also collaborated with Service Canada, Passport Canada, and DFAIT in order to update partner Web sites. A temporary dedicated unit at the Call Centre was created to respond to these same concerns. In addition, existing publications are being updated and new publications are being created in order to address these concerns.

In collaboration with the Institute of Canadian Citizenship, several dialogues took place between new citizens and established Canadians to discuss the value of citizenship and active citizenship.

CIC launched the Enhanced Citizenship Ceremonies Initiative in order to make ceremonies more meaningful and interactive for new and established Canadians and to encourage the participation of communities. Some of the activities included holding receptions after most ceremonies, encouraging candidates for citizenship to share their stories during the ceremony, inviting community members to ceremonies held in CIC offices, and increasing the number of established Canadians who reaffirm their citizenship at ceremonies.

Citizenship Processing

In 2006-2007, CIC continued to identify and implement sustainable solutions to decrease inventories and speed up processing in order to improve efficiency and client satisfaction.

Following a pilot launched in December 2006, CIC joined phase one of the RCMP Real Time Identification (RTID) project in March 2007, which allows for the transmission of electronic fingerprints. This will reduce processing times for citizenship applicants who are required to submit fingerprints.

An enhanced online Residence Calculator was released in July 2006. This online tool allows applicants to assess their eligibility before starting the application process. Enhanced features include the capacities to save calculations and return at a later date and to include time spent in jail or on probation when assessing residence eligibility.

An expiry date was added to citizenship certificates for holders subject to the retention requirements. This is an additional reminder to some citizens born outside of Canada to a Canadian parent that they must apply to retain their citizenship before their 28th birthday.

In 2006-2007, Canada welcomed over 243,000 new citizens and issued over 71,000 proofs of Canadian citizenship.

Promotion of Citizenship

CIC continues to promote citizenship by holding citizenship and reaffirmation ceremonies in CIC offices and in communities across Canada. A total of 2,999 citizenship ceremonies took place in 2006-2007 of which 377 were held in communities.

The 60th Anniversary of the Canadian citizenship campaign was launched during a citizenship ceremony at the Supreme Court of Canada in February 2007. Other 60th Anniversary ceremonies were held throughout the year and across the country. Other national events in 2006-2007 included the National 4-H Seminar, held in partnership with the Canadian 4-H Council, the Rotary Club of Ottawa Adventure in Citizenship, held in partnership with the Rotary Club of Ottawa, a Sunset Ceremony, held in partnership with the RCMP, and special ceremonies held across the country on Canada Day and during Veterans’ Week. Canada’s Citizenship Week (CCW) provides an opportunity for all Canadians to reflect on the value of citizenship, the meaning of being Canadian, and the rights, privileges and responsibilities of citizenship.